Portage man taken into custody for 7 vehicle thefts

Zach Otto

PORTAGE, Wis. — The Portage Police department took Zachery T. Otto, 18, back into custody for seven counts of operating a motor vehicle without owner’s consent on Oct. 22 after initially arresting him for unrelated charges in June.

During April and May 2021, the Portage Police Department said they took at least nine reports regarding stolen vehicles in Portage. Almost all of these stolen vehicles were later recovered in the City of Madison or in surrounding Madison communities.

Portage police said they were actively investigating these vehicle thefts for the past six months.

Otto is also been referred to the Columbia County District Attorney’s Office for a charging decision on one remaining operating a motor vehicle without owner’s consent case. He is currently being held in the Columbia County Jail awaiting an initial appearance in the Columbia County Circuit Court.

The Portage Police Department was assisted by the Madison Police Department, Verona Police Department, Fitchburg Police Department, Sun Prairie Police Department, Milwaukee Police Department, Wisconsin Department of Justice and the Columbia County District Attorney’s Office.